Showing posts with label logic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label logic. Show all posts

Monday, April 27, 2015

Using Validity and Critical Thinking On a Daily Basis

On a daily basis, we hear claims of how this product leads to weight loss, how we should support someone’s awe-inspiring cause, and where we should be spending our time. Invalid arguments are familiar and knowing how to determine whether or not an argument is truthful can help us make choices that lead to better outcomes.

Life is full of people who want you to buy something, sell something, get on a team, and convert to their cause. The list of invalid arguments are nearly endless. Most of us come across inaccurate and invalid arguments that are designed to stir our emotions but have little substance. Knowing valid from invalid arguments helps us see the truth behind the words.

An argument is valid if the premises are true, and the conclusion is not false. Main points should lead to and support the conclusion. In situations where the premises are true but the conclusion is false then the argument is invalid. The premise and the conclusion should hold true.

Even though logic and life may seem different, one leads to the quality of the other. Good choices offer greater outcomes. It is beneficial to try and find your way through arguments by using critical thinking and searching out counter arguments. If you can select counter arguments, the argument becomes open to questioning and more likely invalid.

You can see an example of a statement from a shifty used cars salesman:

“This is a great car because its style is modern. You seem like a guy with great taste, and if you buy this car you are going to be popular as well”.

While it might be true that buying this car is popular and could make you more popular there are many circumstances where this does not hold true. Perhaps you have a great sense of style and decide to buy the car but don’t want your friends to ride in it. If your friends can’t get a ride, they may not like you very much. Maybe the car is in style for people in your grandmother's age group.

The point being that popularity rests only in part on the type of car you drive and more heavily influenced by personality, style, and other issues that make one desirable. The car in and of itself won’t make you the most popular person in town.

It may have been more accurate for the salesperson to say, “This car has sold more models than any other car in the country. You seem to be a guy who cares about his social image. If you buy this car, it will make a statement about who you are.”

This statement is more accurate as the facts about the popularity can be checked with sales numbers. Likewise, research has backed the idea that when we buy a product we are saying a little bit about ourselves. Many of purchase choices are a direct reflection of our personality. The second argument makes it through the "smell" test.

Validity of arguments should maintain a level of internal consistency that helps us know that the premises justify the conclusion. Searching out alternative explanations helps us get a better grasp of what is going on. Flattery with emotionally driven words is not the same as having a logical argument with internal consistency.

Using your logic, reasoning, and fact checking ability, you will be less prone to the false statements that have become part of our lives. Whether it be advertising, a request for a donation, purchasing a car or political support for an idea it is important for you to use your critical thinking skills. It will help you make more accurate conclusions and decisions that lead to advantageous behavior that helps you fulfill your goals.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Intuition and Scientific Advancement Among the Gifted Population

Giftedness is a trait that comes with high intensity, motivation, love of learning and emotional sensitivities that make a person highly functional in the environment. Many countries have gifted enrichment programs to ensure that such individuals can fully contribute to the development of society. The U.S. has not fully developed their programs. Understanding the power of giftedness and their intuition that leads to career success is important in fostering their abilities for the benefit of everyone. 

Science has moved beyond the definition of giftedness and is working on better ways to select and categories giftedness for better development (Porath, 2013). Intuition is one of those gifted traits that lead to higher mastery of the environment and scientific innovation through perceiving differences within the environment. That perception matched with the rigor of scientific logic encourages new discoveries.

Intuition can be extremely powerful and can culminate in all types of useful conclusions that would have taken years with the normal investigative process.  Intuition is seen as a cognitive style that has been described as the “sixth sense” where the unconscious recognizes patterns and solutions to those patterns before the conscious mind is aware (Pearson, 2013). Such processes can be used to make accurate decisions and investigated for clarity afterwards. 

Intuition is so powerful it can do things science cannot yet explain fully. For example, intuition can lead to health choices that put cancer in remission, picking a better deck of cards for better results, and selecting items behind screens without seeing anything that would tip a person off. According to Dr. Turner book Radical Remission the body picks up on environmental cues unconsciously and makes conclusions that manifest themselves in physiological responses (Turner, 2014). 

Gifted individuals have powerful senses of intuition and logic that can lead them to unique AND innovative methods of solving problems.  According to studies on highly intelligent and creative people, gifted individuals often display a preference for either rationality or intuition (Karwowski, 2008). The style they rely on will impact how they understand and approach their world. 

Intuition among the gifted is an interesting and often unexplored trait where their biological and psychological preference matches to create unique powers of understanding and reasoning. The same skill that allows them to find new discoveries in their respective fields also leaves many unable to follow their train of thought. Gifted individuals are considered relatively rare among the population and ensuring they have the social, legal, and intellectual support/protection is important for advancing society. 

Karwowski, M. (2008). Giftedness and Intuition. Gifted and Talented International, 23 (1).
Pearson, H. (2013). Science and intuition: do both have a place in clinical decision making? British Journal of Nursing, 22 (4). 

Porath, M. (2013). The gifted personality: what are we searching for and why? Talent Development & Excellence, 5 (2). 

Turner, K. (2014). The science behind intuition. Psychology Today. Retrieved